Cavalier Corner

June 2017

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JUNE 2017 ◆ 7 FIVE QUESTIONS SOFTBALL FOURTH-YEAR KATIE PARK Park led UVA in batting average (.382), runs (34), hits (68), doubles (12) and total bases (111) en route to first-team All-ACC and Na- tional Fastpitch Coaches Association first-team all-region honors. PHOTO BY JIM DAVES/COURTESY UVA CAVALIER SPORTS CAVALIER CORNER: You are a native of Phoenix — why was Virginia your college choice? PARK: "I was trying to escape the Arizona heat and no one told me about the humidity here! After Virginia expressed a genuine interest and I got to come visit, I absolutely fell in love with all that the university and Charlottesville had to offer so everyone else fell off my radar." CAVALIER CORNER: Who inspired, directed and provided life lessons for you, and what did it mean to you? PARK: "I had so many people along the way supporting me, pushing me to get better, and teaching me to not settle because something gets hard. "The most important life lesson I've learned, well, I'm still working on it really, is to not take yourself too seriously in anything you do … it takes too much energy." CAVALIER CORNER: What do you credit your breakout fourth-year campaign to? PARK: "Again, I owe a lot of my success to the people around me. The entire coaching staff; Coach Jo [head coach Joanna Hardin], Coach Raf- ter [assistant Kaleigh R a f t e r ] a n d C o a c h Crash [assistant Katie Repole] have been amazing, allowing me the freedom to make mistakes and make my own decisions but at the same time really challenge me to step into a bigger role for the team. "It's awesome at the end of the year to see the numbers, but during the year it was always just put- ting one foot in front of the other and figuring out what the team needed from me each day." CAVALIER CORNER: What studies were you in- volved in and what are some cherished personal takeaways that will be lifetime memories? PARK: "I earned a degree in psychology with a minor in history. The university instills a sense of pride and integrity academically, but being a student-athlete teaches you pretty quickly the necessary time-management skills and how to make killer color-coded agendas." CAVALIER CORNER: Do you have any design on playing in the National Pro Fastpitch league and what does the immediate future hold for you? PARK: "There are so many stellar softball players going on to play in the NPF, so if you hear of a team that's looking for someone let me know! "Right now, I am extremely grateful to be able to extend my career for at least a few more months by going to play with the Therwil Flyers in Switzerland this summer." — Jerry Reid

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